The beta to be unveiled today will include only public domain works and those authorized by copyright-holders.
On the plus side for consumers, Microsoft says LSB users will enjoy “full access to all of the text.” What’s more, the company will eventually blend search results with those of Windows Live Search.
Decidedly on the minus side, the output for downloaded books is in PDF. Does this mean Microsoft will do a Sony Reader-optimized version? Ugh, don’t count on it.
Rant: I hate the interface of Windows Live Search. What a stark contrast to the simplicity of Google. While the basic WLS’s looks easy, the options aren’t presently as nicely as Google does.
On top of everything else, this “Windows Live” crap is a wonderful example of Microsoft placing branding ahead of consumer convenience. I’d be a lot more likely to remember “Microsoft Book Search” over a clunker like “Live Search Books.”
Disclosure: I do own a tiny slice of Google for retirement purposes but–as shown by my rants against Google’s PDFs, etc.–am hardly flacking for Google, either.